The Levant News — Osama Bin Laden’s successor blasted ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in an online message, according to Daily Star newspaper.
In his online message, al-Zawahiri said: “We preferred to respond with as little as possible, out of our concern to extinguish the fire of sedition, but Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and his brothers did not leave us a choice, for they have demanded that all the jihadis reject their confirmed pledges of allegiance, and to pledge allegiance to them for what they claim of a caliphate.”
He added that “everyone” was taken by surprise at Baghdadi anointing himself as the fourth caliph in Islamic history, as he did this “without consulting Muslims”.
Experts say the spat will “irreconcilably” divide the two groups and it could be golden news for counter-terror agencies, they also stressed that his outburst came ahead of the 14th anniversary of al-Qaeda’s attacks in the US.
Speaking to 6abc, counter terrorism expert Matthew Olsen said: “Zawahiri until now has not been willing to openly condemn Baghdadi and ISIS, this highlights how deep the division is between al-Qaeda leadership and ISIS”.
It’s worth mentioning that the Islamic State “ISIS” organization, formerly the Al-Qaeda offshoot in Iraq, split from the larger group two years ago.